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FAQ – Online Storage

Question : Does Online Storage really work?

Of course! Online storage services have been around for many years, Mozy for example started in 2005. These services are being used daily by millions of people, LiveDrive servers over 500,000 paying customers while Mozy has more than 3 million customers who signed up. Also the big companies like Google and Microsoft offer a quality online storage.

Qeustion: What Is Cloud Storage?

When it comes to your digital assets, “storage” generally refers to the server your information is kept on or just your simple computer. It could be the server used for hosting your company’s website or it could be the computer at your desk that you use for storing your important documents.

Cloud storage is basically the idea of having these devices located somewhere else that isn’t onsite. The “cloud” refers to the notion that your digital assets are somewhere in the sky where you can access them from anywhere whether you’re at your desk or on a layover at the airport.

Question: How Does the Cloud Work?

How the cloud will fit into your company will depend greatly on the provider you go with. Obviously, every provider will do it a bit differently. For the most part, though, it would be like using your own hard drive. When you want to save things, you just move the documents to your cloud folder and they will immediately be backed up on your remote server. In some situations, though, you may elect to have this back up done automatically. Your website, for example, is probably not something you want to keep having to save throughout the day, especially if you have users who can update it themselves. For that, you’d want some type of automation to ensure the cloud is being updated with the newest editions of that digital asset at regular intervals.

Question : Is the service a good investment?

While the cost of cloud storage services are low, it is not free of charge. Whether or not you can consider it a good investment depends on the value of the files you are backing up. In case of a business situation losing files can probably be translated in a financial loss. However in case of losing personal photo’s and video’s this is a decision everybody has to make individually.

Question : Can the cloud providers be trusted?

Many of the backup services listed at CompareOnlineStorage are owned or backed by large multinationals. There are also companies we don’t trust, like all the cloud brands owned by JDI Backup, these are: JustCloud, Zipcloud, MyPCBackup, BackupGenie, also see this article “is-justcloud-really-the-best-answerno”

The company behind Mozy for example is EMC, an organization with 50,000 employees and over $20 billion in revenues per year. Carbonite is just like EMC listed on the stock exchange. This makes these companies less likely to dissapear out of the blue. Unfortunately also large (very large) companies can turn out to be corrupt or go bankrupt. The good thing is that in case such a situation might occur it will usually go announced and slowly which will give customers enough time to move their files to another backup service.

Question : Can’t I use a free service?

Yes you can, we even recommend starting out with a free trial that is offered by most backup services. However for users with a bit more needs (larger storage or better service) the paid services are just a better option. There are also free online storage services like Dropbox which work fairly good. However they always offer a limited service for free, up to 5 or 10 GB’s,  if you need more it becomes a paid service. So there are several option to start and try free solutions at first but just make sure to weigh the downsides as well.

Question : Are my files secure?

Yes, an online backup can considered to safe. Is it 100% safe? No. Even though the level of security in online backup services can be compared to online banking there is no 100% guarantee. Even in bank accounts things can go wrong. See, even though your data is “on the cloud”, it’s still in a remote server somewhere. It’s still kept on a physical device. The only reason this would elevate the risk of your information getting stolen is because now you’re involving a third party—the company that provides you with these servers—and they could create a hole in your security measures.

At the same time, though, one could make the exact opposite argument. You could say that having your data on the cloud actually keeps you safer so long as you pick the right company. As security is always a huge priority for cloud providers, they might even do a better job of protecting your information than you cold.

Also, security doesn’t always refer to the idea that someone may break in and steal your data. Your important information could also be compromised because of, say, a fire in your building. Better to have your data backed up at another site via the cloud as opposed to on the premises.

However when we compare the safety of any online backup service with your wireless home network we can safely state: online backups are very secure!

Question: Is the Online Storage Expensive?

Given how many amazing things the cloud can do, it’s understandable that you might think it would come with a hefty price tag. For the most part, though, this isn’t the case. Consider that the cloud means you don’t have to foot the bill to house physical servers on your own property. You also don’t need the same amount of IT support on hand as you otherwise would. The cloud is also extremely scalable. A Fortune 500 company can add features—and thus pay more—that a smaller operation would never need. Hopefully, you have a better understanding of the cloud after reading this article. It’s such an important way of how business is being done that you simply can’t risk not understanding it in depth.
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